The rate of access to improved sanitation in Niger was only at 4% in rural areas, against 9% for the national level in 2012. During its Phase I in this country, the efforts of the USAID WA-WASH Program contributed to increase the sanitation access rate through the promotion of Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS) approach.
Barago (in Zinder region) is one of the villages that benefited from the Program’s CLTS activities. Through this approach, USAID WA-WASH intended to improve the living conditions of people in its intervention areas. Before the USAID WA-WASH Program activities, most of the population in the village used nature for their natural needs. The chief of the village remembers this situation which created many diarrheal diseases especially among children. “These diseases had bad consequences on the life of our community members. In addition to children, women were very affected by the problem. When their children were sick, they were obliged to give up on some income generating activities to take care of them”, affirm chief of the village.
Nowadays, things have positively changed at Barago thanks to the awareness activities, the construction and the use of 36 CLTS latrines, and the support of the USAID WA-WASH Program. The chief of the village played an important role in the building of latrines by supporting awareness activities. According to him: “Since the USAID WA-WASH Program has started working with us, our village has become clean. Nowadays, everyone uses latrine for his natural needs. The village has a water and sanitation management committee.” He also supports the management committee to encourage the community members maintaining a good sanitation status in the village. The effort done by all the community members of Barago has helped to certified open defecation free. “Thanks to USAID WA-WASH Program, we have less disease and fewer problems related to sanitation and hygiene” as told by the village chief Barago.